Does manually setting your drive's page file ever improve gaming performance?

Discussion in 'Videocards - NVIDIA GeForce Drivers Section' started by BlindBison, Sep 7, 2022.

  1. BlindBison

    BlindBison Ancient Guru

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    I've seen some videos on YT suggest that manually setting the page file size (say, to 8192 MB or some such) can reduce stuttering and improve performance in some games. upload_2022-9-7_1-28-27.png
    Is that actually true though or is it "fine" to just let Windows manage this value? In particular I heard some folks mention this seemed to reduce stuttering for them in Spiderman Remastered, but it's not something I can test without reinstalling the game. Still, I may mess around it with in other titles to check. I would hope that in 2022 Windows could just handle this on its own though. A lot of "solutions" people suggest wind up being placebo in my experience but it did get me thinking on what Guru3D thinks of this option. Thanks,
     
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  2. ant_sh

    ant_sh Member

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    It is not true - if your game stutters it probably has nothing to do with pagefile. Manually setting pagefile size is just a way to make sure that Windows has enough virtual memory should the need arise.
     
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  3. S3r1ous

    S3r1ous Member Guru

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    Well when Windows shrinks or enlarges the page file its doing something in the background that might impact your game when its moving files around.
    Back in the day HDDs were slow and you could see it as stutter etc. These days... unless you have ancient hard drive its not a big deal anymore. I myself set it to specific size to avoid the problem all together.
     
  4. Horus-Anhur

    Horus-Anhur Ancient Guru

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    In the age of single core CPUs and HDDs, this might have some impact in performance.
    But I doubt it will do anything today.
     

  5. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    The more RAM installed the less relevant page file becomes.

    If you have several physical drives you can set page file on all of them - it was considered that Windows will use (for swapping) less loaded one.
     
  6. aufkrawall2

    aufkrawall2 Ancient Guru

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    Without some crazy content creation workflows, compiling of large projects etc., the only reason for the page file to exist on a 32GB RAM system is to have sufficient virtual memory to prevent crashes long before available physical memory amount is depleted. There likely isn't ~anything written to the storage device anyway.
     
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  7. EdKiefer

    EdKiefer Ancient Guru

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    You can easy check TM to see how much is in use. I seem to have few hundred MB no matter how much is in use.
     
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  8. aufkrawall2

    aufkrawall2 Ancient Guru

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  9. tsunami231

    tsunami231 Ancient Guru

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    I been using 1gb page file for as long as i can remember, never had issues on 16gb system or 6gb system i used it on, less there was game i played that actual used pagefile, which was rare even back then. at less for me. I did time to time get "low memory" pops up back then but on 16gb i dont think matter much, frankly only reason i sill have page file is for BSOD dump.

    I do remember back in day that page file actual made cyrsis load faster, never under stood why it never really helps performance wise in framerates or anything atlest not that noticed

    According to TreeSizeFree

    i have 1gb pagefile and 16mb swapfile
     
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  10. aufkrawall2

    aufkrawall2 Ancient Guru

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    It is very easy: Once you reach 100% virtual memory as shown in hwinfo64, processes allocating RAM will crash. And without page file, you reach that long before physical memory is depleted. There is no way around this fact.
     
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  11. CPC_RedDawn

    CPC_RedDawn Ancient Guru

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    This was true way back in the low RAM, HDD, and 32bit OS days.

    32bit OS's could only access 4GB memory (gpu and cpu combined) Large Address Aware helped but it was still capped at 4GB AFAIK it just split GPU and CPU memory but kept RAM at 4GB.

    Then you had HDD's which were slow and could become even slower due to age or fragmentation.

    Then you also have factor in that most people had 1 or 2GB RAM and even upgrading you were capped at 4GB.

    Pagefile was a way around the RAM limitation but allowing the OS to use a portion of HDD space as memory. This helped for games that required a lot of RAM for the time or if people ran multiple apps at the same time.

    Moving the pagefile to a different HDD or to an SSD (when the released) actually could help gaming performance. This meant that if pagefile was to be used it would not interfere too much with the loading of assets of the game as it would be on a different drive.

    Now its best to leave it alone. The OS will handle it just fine, we have tons of memory now and 64bit OS's and super fast SSD's and NVME's. There is literally zero reason to worry about pagefile. I would bet your OS nowadays barely even touches it.
     
  12. Mufflore

    Mufflore Ancient Guru

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    Agreed with above.
    Maybe place the pagefile sensibly on a different drive, but otherwise leave it on auto.
    Dont mess with it and you wont risk having problems.
     
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  13. user1

    user1 Ancient Guru

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    I used to disable to pagefile when I had like 8gb of ram back in ~2010, but I found that some applications behave strangely(random crashes, weird lag ect) , I have no idea as to why, as it never hit anywhere close to 80% memory usage.
    I think the only reason to manage the page file would be to increase free space, otherwise I don't see any reason to touch it.
     
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  14. aufkrawall2

    aufkrawall2 Ancient Guru

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    I just explained that. It's out of virtual memory that crashes apps, task manager and most tools show physical memory.
     
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  15. user1

    user1 Ancient Guru

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    is it just me or does that seem really dumb? surely microsoft wouldn't limit virtual memory space based on the pagefile+ram?
     
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  16. aufkrawall2

    aufkrawall2 Ancient Guru

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    It's how Windows kernel works, page file extends virtual memory. It seems on Linux you don't need one to be able to fill up most of the physical memory under typical conditions.
     
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  17. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    Virtual memory is backed by RAM + storage (page file). The amount of RAM plus amount of free storage space is the (actual) limit of virtual memory.
     
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  18. user1

    user1 Ancient Guru

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    ah ic. I know on linux you can set it up to not swap at all until you completely run out of memory. just kinda assumed that the same was true of windows.

    edit:
    https://github.com/MicrosoftDocs/Su...nce/ram-virtual-memory-pagefile-management.md

    some docs, I dunno seems kinda weird still, they claim virtual space is unlimited, and that it won't swap until physical memory is exceeded, it does say that if committed bytes exceed ram, it will start swapping , however it also says
    smells of windows quirkiness. I would assume that if there is no page file it would simply not swap, and reach an OoM error, but that doesn't seem to be the case.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2022
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  19. oneoulker

    oneoulker Active Member

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    even if you have practically unlimited memory, spiderman will refuse to run properly and crash if you don't have pagefile. same for god of war (actually warns you that pagefile is required). and some other games. i think flight simulator did this too.

    some games just want to see pagefile there and do not care if you have free memory or not
    they are not even using that much, but sure as hell, they simply want it

    so no, i'd say don't touch pagefile stuff. just let the windows manage it and save yourself potential headaches.

    i dont know about stuttering however, all I know is disabling it may cause more harm than good
     
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  20. BlindBison

    BlindBison Ancient Guru

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    For whatever combination of reasons I just have not been able to get Spiderman Remastered to run consistently smoothly for the life of me (5800X + 3070 + 16 gigs of 3600 MHz DDR4 RAM + NVMe + G-Sync 144 Hz panel).

    I've tried in-game v-sync and control panel v-sync + g-sync, I've tried capping the framerate via control panel or RTSS, I've tried the in-game half refresh rate v-sync in conjunction with G-Sync (in an attempt to cap the framerate that way), I've tried supersampling the game to load up the GPU to stay totally GPU bound and to naturally bring down the uncapped framerates, I've tried the resolution scaler they've got, I've tried minimum to maximum setttings, I've reducing all of the CPU bound settings and so on.

    But no matter what I do two clear problems persist on the latest patch:
    1) If I go to the top of a building then simply pan the camera in a circle around the the city, if you follow a distant building/tower with your eyes you'll see that the animation just isn't smooth at times -- it looks like "jitter"
    2) If I swing fast through the city then dive downwards then swing at the last moment for maximum speed the game will sometimes just stutter a bit as you get low to the ground at speed.

    I honestly don't understand why this is being heralded as such a great PC port -- it's OK don't get me wrong, it's cool that they have features like DLSS and reconstruction options and dynamic resolution scaling and I never had the game crash or anything, but this is no DOOM Eternal or Red Dead 2 or even post-patch Cyberpunk (which is incredibly high detail without stutters in my experience). Such a frustrating experience trying to get this dang game to run "smooth" consistently -- even capping it to 30 fps with RTSS you can still see the same animation/camera jitter, drives me absolutely nuts.

    The best I found I can really do is to load up the GPU, decrease the CPU bound settings (RT seems to make these stutters worse?), then just run the game uncapped with G-Sync. I also tried changing various power plans (prefer max perf / windows power settings) but that did nothing as far as I can tell. Feelsbadman

    Actually you know what I should do, I should post this in the Spiderman guru3d thread. Will do that actually, thanks.
     
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